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VIRAZOLE 36% WORLDWIDE SALES GAIN IN 1988 PROPELS ICN PHARMACEUTICAL GROWTH

Executive Summary

A 36% increase in 1988 worldwide sales for Virazole (ribavirin) fueled a 37% gain in ICN Pharmaceuticals' revenues to $ 166 mil. for the year. Sales for the company's ethical dermatological products, rising 58% in the U.S., also contributed to the increase. In a Feb. 13 press release on year-end financial results, ICN attributed its sales gain to "progress across the breadth of its operations, including new product operations, acquisition of new product lines and businesses and international expansion, as well as continuing demand for existing pharmaceutical and biomedical products." ICN's overall net income rose substantially in 1988, to $ 17.8 mil., from a loss of $ 16.6 mil. in 1987. The firm attributed the improvement to a good performance by SPI, to the repurchase of the company's debt on the open market, and a to "one-time gain related to the withdrawal from a joint venture by Eastman Kodak, which was partially offset by nonrecurring expenses." The firm realized a gain of $ 13.7 mil. in 1988 from the repurchase of its long-term debt. ICN also noted that 1987 net income included an unrealized loss of $ 19.4 mil. in the company's investment portfolio. The one-time gain in the third quarter resulted from Kodak's decision to transfer its portion of the Nucleic Acid Research Institute to ICN and its subsidiaries, including Viratek. Chart omitted.

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